December 27, 2011

Cooking for Christmas



I realize that no excuse is sufficient when returning to the blogosphere after a period of absence, but  mine is about as good as it gets. You see, this holiday season, I planned and prepared Christmas dinner for my side of the family. The Thurston side got some leftover muffins and pie, but I didn't make them dinner this time around. Maybe next year.



Today, I am utterly exhausted and sick to boot. I have finally determined the reason that I continue to get sick every time I come home for a visit. When I am stressed and working my butt off, the insistent adrenaline keeps me from getting sick. As soon as my body senses that the stress is over, that there is no longer a need to power through, I experience a complete and utter crash in my immunities and fall terribly ill.

Well, the week after the semester ended, my body must have forgotten that I still needed to move from Rochester to Canandaigua and prepare a Christmas meal for 15 people.

I've been sick with a flu for days! And worst of all . . .

I have laryngitis.

No voice whatsoever. For someone like me, this is a fate worse than death. Do you have any idea what it feels like to know that the cure is to just clam up and give your voice a rest but to be psychologically incapable of this act? *Heavy sigh*


Yeah, I didn't make these rolls, but I thought the table looked cute. 

Here is a rundown of the unique and surprisingly low-fat (my family is trying to be more health-conscious) Christmas dinner I cam up with. I was most pleased with the baked goods, but everything turned out quite delicious.

Recipes to come later!

Christmas Dinner 2011

Lean pork roast with apple cider glaze
Rosemary potatoes
Green beans almondine
Citrus stuffing with baked chicken livers
Coarse apple chutney
Butternut squash bake
Coconut butter rum pie
"Hamantaschen" muffins

Actually, I said that everything was delicious, but this is not entirely true. The citrus stuffing did not turn out well . . . and it was not because of the chicken livers, you giblet-haters! I made the stuffing chock full of carrots, celery, onions, apples, cranberries, walnuts, and chopped chicken livers (it was one of the more extensive dishes in the meal); and I flavored it with chicken stock, orange zest, thyme, and tarragon. 

Mom said the flavor was incredible!

However, my mom and I, not having baked stuffing from scratch very often, left the dish covered as it baked. The bread cubes absorbed all of the moisture, and the substance took on the distinctive consistency of snot.

I have enough of that going on with my flu. Thank you.

The stuffing was not offered to the dinner guests. I was disappointed, but all bellies were full, and all taste buds were tingling :-), so no complaints.

I hope your holidays were wonderful (and still are if you celebrate Kwanza!) God bless, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and many happy returns.


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